Tag Archives: Friends and Family of Addicts

It’s Easier Than You Think To Become Addicted To Prescription Drugs

When most people think of drug addicts, they have an image in their mind of someone on the street getting high on illegal drugs. However, the reality is that many individuals fall into a devastating cycle of drug addiction after being prescribed a medication for an injury or illness.

The Commonality Of Prescription Medication Addiction

Easier To Become Addicted To Prescription Drugs-SummitEstateAccording to the World Health Organization, more than two million Americans are addicted to prescription painkillers like Vicodin, Percocet, or OxyContin. Many more are addicted to prescription tranquilizers, sedatives, and amphetamines. And, for these individuals, there was almost never an intention to become addicted.

Medications are commonly prescribed by physicians to treat common problems like insomnia, anxiety, ADHD, pain, and depression. However, at least 10 percent of those who are prescribed an addictive medication will ultimately become dependent on it. This is an important consideration for both physicians and their patients.

The Factors That Lead To Prescription Drug Addiction

Quick Solution & Family History Of Addiction

In a busy medical practice, most physicians do not have sufficient time to carefully assess each patient’s history to determine their risk of addiction. Often, medications are prescribed to those who would be better off being treated and healed through non-pharmaceutical methods.

Efficacy

Many addictive prescription medications are highly effective and fast-acting. Because of this, the medication becomes the go-to solution for managing a health problem whether it is pain, anxiety, stress, or depression. Over time, this effectiveness can lead to dependency of the medication and eventually abuse and addiction.

Pleasure

Some prescription medications cause users to experience a euphoric, relaxed feeling. While similar feelings can be achieved through holistic methods like yoga, meditation, breathing techniques, and exercise, the medication provides a feeling of relief quickly and with little effort.

Tolerance

Those who use addictive prescription medications are at risk of developing a tolerance. This can lead to taking more of the medication to feel the same desired effect. This is a key indicator that the body is becoming dependent on the medication, and prescription drug treatment may be necessary.

Don’t Wait- Get Customized Treatment For Yourself Or A Loved One Now!

If you believe that a loved one has become dependent on a prescription medication – (see the signs of prescription drug addiction here), it’s important to get help now. Individuals should not quit a prescription medication on their own, as there can be dangerous side effects.

At Summit Estate, our caring and professional treatment team is equipped to help each individual overcome addiction to prescription drugs. We will create an individualized treatment plan based on you or your loved one’s individual needs and goals.

Call Us Now To See How We Can Help – We Are Here For You, 24/7

My Loved One Has A Dual Diagnosis, What Now?

It can be overwhelming to find out that your loved one is suffering from a dual diagnosis of substance abuse and mental illness. You may be wondering where you should begin when it comes to getting help and moving forward.

Dual Diagnosis Stats – Your Loved One Is Not Alone

First, it’s important to know that your loved one is not alone. Dual diagnosis is common. Here are just a few statistics from the Journal of the American Medical Association that may surprise you:

  • Loved One-Dual Diagnosis Treatment In CA-Summit EstateApproximately 50 percent of individuals with severe mental illness are also affected by substance abuse.
  • More than one-third of alcohol abusers and over 50 percent of drug abusers have at least one significant mental illness.
  • Of all individuals diagnosed with mental illness, nearly 30 percent abuse either alcohol or drugs.

Unfortunately, many individuals who have co-occurring disorders never receive proper treatment. In fact, less than 10 percent are treated for both their substance abuse and their mental illness.

So, it’s a positive first step that your loved one has been diagnosed. Now, it’s time to get help.

Finding The Right Treatment For Dual Diagnosis

Getting effective treatment for a dual diagnosis isn’t always simple. Many drug and alcohol rehabilitation centers are solely focused on treating addiction and not mental illness. Likewise, anxiety and depression treatment centers may not have the resources to effectively address addiction.

Until recently, addiction problems and underlying mental illness have been treated separately. However, significant new research has shown the benefits of treating substance abuse and mental health problems as part of an integrated, holistic recovery program.

At Summit Estate, we are dedicated to helping individuals obtain the best chance of recovery with personalized, co-occurring disorders treatment in CA. Our team is highly experienced in treating dual diagnosis by using a recovery strategy that is focused on the individual’s specific needs, challenges, and long-term goals. Treatment can also include individual, couples, and family therapy sessions to help strengthen damaged relationships and support your loved one’s recovery.

Taking The Next Step With Your Loved One

Now that your loved one has received a dual diagnosis, you can help them on their journey to recovery. We encourage you to call us now to learn more about our treatment programs.

Is My Loved One Addicted To Prescription Drugs?

It is estimated that more than 12 million people currently abuse prescription drugs in the United States. This is more than the combined number who abuse cocaine, heroin, inhalants and hallucinogens. Nearly three-quarters of these individuals abuse opioid pain relievers such as Vicodin and Oxycodone. The statistics are both alarming and important to know if you are concerned about a loved one who may be abusing prescription drugs.

Is My Loved One Addicted To Prescription Drugs-SummitEstateCounseling

The reality is that prescription drug abuse is a common problem that affects people from all walks of life. The problem often starts innocently through efforts to control pain or anxiety and escalates unintentionally through misguided prescribing practices of doctors. While these medications can be safe when used as prescribed for specific health issues, they can be dangerous at higher dosages or when taken for reasons other than intended.

Identifying The Signs And Symptoms Of Prescription Drug Addiction

If you believe that a loved one is suffering from prescription drug addiction, it’s important to learn the signs and symptoms of abuse. For opioid painkillers, the physical symptoms can include:

  • Confusion
  • Constipation
  • Depression
  • Low blood pressure
  • Poor coordination
  • Profuse sweating

Of course, these symptoms may sometimes be difficult to identify. Other signals that often appear more obvious are these behavioral signs:

  • Stealing or forging prescriptions
  • Mood swings
  • Hostility
  • Taking higher doses of a medication than prescribed
  • Changing sleep patterns
  • Frequently “losing” prescriptions or changing doctors to obtain prescriptions from more than one doctor

If you are noticing these symptoms or other unusual behaviors, your loved one may be addicted to prescription drugs and in immediate need of help. Prescription medications are highly addictive, and they have the ability to change brain function over time. Withdrawal symptoms can be serious. Thus, simply asking them to go “cold turkey” could be dangerous.

Don’t Wait – Get Help Now!

An addiction to prescription medications will not go away on its own. If left unaddressed, the problem will become more serious and can eventually be fatal. Identifying prescription drug addiction as soon as possible is vital. If there is a problem, the best solution is professional addiction treatment to enable your loved one to get the in-depth help they need to detox and embrace long-term recovery.

We encourage you to call us to learn more about customized addiction treatment programs at Summit Estate Recovery Center.

Help Is Available – Call Now!

3 Myths About Drug Abuse And Addiction

There is much we now know about drug abuse and addiction. Yet, there are many things we are still finding out from ongoing research. Fortunately, as more is learned, we are able to debunk common myths that are often generated by those with limited knowledge of the challenges facing individuals suffering from addiction.

Myths About Drug Abuse And Addiction

The following are three such myths that have been proven to be wholeheartedly false.

Myth #1: Drug Addiction Is A Choice

Although taking drugs may be a choice at first, it eventually becomes a compulsion propelled by chemical changes in the brain caused by the drug. Addiction is a side effect of drug abuse and not simply a lifestyle choice.

Because of this side effect, a holistic drug abuse treatment program is necessary to address both the physical and emotional aspects of addiction.

Myth #2 – Drug Abuse Is A Character Flaw

3 Myths About Drug Abuse & Addiction-SummitEstate.comThis is a common myth generated by those who believe that people who abuse drugs simply need to have stronger will power to overcome it. The reality is that drug addiction is a brain disease. Each type of drug changes brain function in its own unique way. These changes occur at a molecular and cellular level and can affect mood, memory, cognitive ability and even motor skills.

Over time, these changes become the single most powerful motivator in a substance abuser’s life. They will literally do anything for the drug. In other words, it’s not a choice or character flaw, but rather an uncontrollable compulsion.

Myth #3 – Those Suffering From Addiction Have To Want Treatment For It To Be Effective

It is a rare individual who wants to undergo addiction treatment, as many are afraid of withdrawals, and life without their substance. The two most common reasons people seek addiction treatment are because loved ones have urged them or because they were court ordered to do so. Research has actually shown that individuals who enter heroin addiction treatment or other drug treatment programs with pressure to address their addiction do comparatively better in treatment than those who enter solely on their own volition. This could be because they know they have support behind them and don’t want to let down or be without their loved ones.

Help For Drug Abuse And Drug Addiction

It is a fact that the cycle of addiction requires effective drug abuse treatment. The problem will not go away on its own and will only get worse over time. Don’t delay in getting the help you or someone you care about needs. Our individualized treatment programs can help get you or a loved one on the road to recovery and long-term sobriety.

Call Us Now To Learn More!

Could Your Loved One Benefit From An Intervention?

When you’re dealing with a loved one’s addiction to drugs, it can be an incredibly frustrating daily situation. You have probably already encouraged them to seek treatment and didn’t get the response you wanted. The reality is that most addicts do not willingly enter treatment by themselves. Intervention is often necessary.

It’s a common myth that individuals must be willing to get help themselves for it to be effective. In most cases, addicts start on the path to recovery because friends or family recognized the problem and took proactive steps to get them into drug intervention programs.

The First Step In Helping Your Addicted Loved One

The first step in getting a friend or family member help is to educate yourself. This can be accomplished by attending local Al-Anon meetings or other support groups. Members can offer guidance for finding addiction treatment resources and will share their own experiences. Once you have the knowledge and resources to help a loved one, an intervention is often the next step.

What Is An Intervention?

Could Your Loved One Benefit From An Intervention-SummitEstateAn intervention is a meeting for family members and friends to communicate to the addict the severity of their problem. This can include details of how their life is being affected, as well as how the problem is impacting others. An intervention does not mean physically forcing someone into rehab, but it is supposed to serve as a serious wake-up call.

An intervention should never be conducted casually without a plan of action in place. A well-thought-out intervention requires inviting family and friends to participate and a plan for transporting the individual to the drug rehab facility.

You will also want to determine in advance how you will handle the situation if your loved one refuses help. Will there be repercussions such as stopping all financial support or other enabling behaviors? It’s vital to avoid the desire to have an intervention before you get all of the details of your plan in place.

You may want to consider getting assistance from a professional interventionist who can help you prepare participants to keep the conversation on track with your loved one and inspire positive change.

Don’t Make Idle Threats

The decision to enter treatment is ultimately up to your loved one. If he or she chooses not to accept help, the consequences for their actions need to begin right away. This form of “tough love” can be difficult for all involved, but it is the only way to communicate that you’re serious about getting them into a recovery program. Don’t back down or give in. Not maintaining your resolve will only communicate that you’re not serious about getting them help.

Support Their Treatment

Once in treatment, it’s essential to follow the advice of the treatment center’s team of specialists. Do not override their advice. Instead, provide encouragement and support to enable your loved one to solely focus on their recovery.

Seeking treatment for a loved one who is addicted to drugs or alcohol is never easy. However, it is a battle that is well worth the effort. Start by calling us now for a confidential consultation with one of our admissions representatives.

We Will Guide You & Your Loved One Toward Healing & Freedom From Addiction!

Signs a Loved One May Have an Addiction

It can be a very troubling experience to suspect or discover that your loved one has an addiction. You might feel shocked, worried, angry, betrayed, or upset. You might take it personally or feel that it’s your responsibility.

frustrationKnow that when you have a loved one who has an addiction, there are ways you can help, and keeping a calm, even mind is one way to start. While you can’t necessarily decide if someone has an addiction, there are warning signs and symptoms to be on the lookout for. For advice about talking to your loved one about this sensitive topic, read this helpful article.

Physical Signs and Symptoms

Drug and alcohol abuse is often, but not always, evident in physical form through a person’s actions, appearance, and ability to perform certain actions.

  • Bloodshot eyes
  • Dilated pupils
  • Changes in appetite or sudden weight loss or gain
  • Changes in sleep patterns—too much or too little, wrong time of day
  • Unusual smells on their breath, body, or clothing
  • Shaking hands
  • Slurred speech
  • Impaired coordination—difficulty with walking, standing, fine motor skills, etc.

Behavioral Signs and Symptoms

Drug and alcohol abuse can cause changes in a person’s behaviors and attitudes.

  • Drop in attendance at work or school—missed days, late arrivals
  • Drop in performance at work or school—poor grades, missed deadlines, mistakes on tasks
  • Unexplained need for money—stealing, borrowing, selling possessions, financial difficulties
  • Acting suspiciously or secretively
  • Sudden change in friends, activities, favorite places, hobbies, or interests
  • Trouble with others or the law—fighting, accidents, illegal activity

Psychological Signs and Symptoms

While you may not be able to see all of the psychological effects of drug or alcohol abuse, some of them are more apparent than others.

  • Unexplained changes in personality
  • Drastic negative changes in attitude
  • Sudden mood swings
  • Frequent bouts of irritability, angry outbursts, or sullenness
  • Periods of hyperactivity, agitation, or giddiness
  • Lack of motivation—spacing out, lethargy, sleepiness
  • Unreasonable fear, anxiety, or paranoia

While your loved one may not display all or even any of these signs and symptoms, noticing a pattern of behavior may be a good indicator that they have developed an addiction problem.

The best thing you can do is to talk to them and let them know you are aware and there to support them, not condemn them. Encourage them to seek help, but don’t force, bribe, or punish them for not doing so.

Remember, you can’t change a person or their behavior. They have to want to change, and only they can do that. Be there and support them, but do not enable, argue, or allow them to harm you.

Reach out for professional advice if you aren’t sure what step to take next.